The world is striving to find an energy source to answer the crisis and to run everything smoothly. With the fast depletion of fossil fuels, we are currently moving towards the end where only renewable energy sources such as the sun can only keep us giving energy. Hence, solar energy is an important topic to study and raise awareness of. In this section, we will study how this energy is harvested and the uses of solar cell. You will learn how solar panels can easily trap energy and convert it into electricity.
What is Solar Energy?
The sunrays originating from the only star in our planetary system radiate energy. This energy is called solar energy as it originates from the sun. It is a sustainable form of energy that will not deplete in due course of time. The evolving technologies can trap heat and light better and convert them into electricity with the use of photovoltaic cells. These cells have made the foundation of solar panel use in our daily life. The harnessing and distribution of solar energy give us hope for the future.
What are a Solar Cell and Solar Panel?
It was in 1839, Edmond Becquerel, a young physicist, demonstrated the phenomenon of the photovoltaic effect in his lab. Since then, a lot of research has been going on in this field to utilize this phenomenon and develop solar cells to trap solar energy. This is how solar cells were introduced.
It is the photovoltaic unit found in the solar panels that trap the light of sun rays and generate electricity. These cells are designed following the photovoltaic effect where electricity is produced in a conductor when exposed to light. There is no chemical reaction in the cells which signifies that they can be used for a long period until the unit stops performing. The semiconductor used in solar cell is silicon in most designs.
A solar panel is the accumulation of the solar cells on a panel board connected to an electrical system that ends in a battery. These cells can charge the battery and directly power a house and its appliances. The prime advantage of solar cell is that they can run throughout their lifespan for years and generate electricity. It does not involve any chemical reaction or require any fuels to run. It generates green sustainable energy without leaving carbon footprints.
Uses of Solar Cell
Here is the list of uses of solar cells in different aspects of our lives.
1. Solar Cells Used in Villages
One of the best ways to demonstrate the power and advantages of solar cells is their use in lighting up dark paths of villages. The power of the sun can be harnessed to light up the interior of the remotest villages where electricity has not reached yet. The uses of photovoltaic cells can be perfectly understood when the lights turn up after the sunsets.
The harvested energy can also be used to run various home appliances. It can also be used to run a school and provide power to rural hospitals. Batteries can be charged during the day and used at night for different purposes. You can easily elaborate and give one use of solar cell.
2. Solar Cells Used in Transportation
The creation of photovoltaic cells has revolutionized the way we are seeing sustainable energy harnessed from the sun these days. The cells are now being made in such an effective way that they can harness more energy and can even charge a car. Probably, this is the prime solar panel use in the future that will make transportation free from fossil fuels. The level of pollution will also reduce and we will have a renewable source of energy to use. Solar power will become more efficient and it will be used to power bigger vehicles and transportation modes.
3. Solar Cells Used in Different Appliances and Equipment
Many small appliances, accessories, and equipment can be paired with a solar cell. The power requirement of these appliances is not high and can be run using a solar cell. Solar cells are used in calculators, watches, clocks, small lights, and even small home appliances. Its utility can be diversified and used in different domains.
4. Solar Cells Used in Homes
Solar panels are excellent fixtures that can be easily installed on the roof or anywhere convenient. These panels can also be designed as roof tiles or as a tree. A rooftop panel is a solar panel used for sale to set up an independent power source for homes and to reduce energy bills. It helps the households to heat water and uses it for different purposes such as bathing, washing clothes, dishwashing, etc. This energy can also be stored in batteries for emergencies and power cuts. As you can see, these panels are ideal for rural areas where constant power supply is questionable.
Advantages of Using Solar Cells
The solar panels are set in such a way that a sunny day can generate power from 9 am to 3 pm. In fact, some solar panels can also rotate their position and adjust their face towards the sun to grab more energy. The advantages of using solar cells are mentioned below.
1. Solar energy is renewable and sustainable. It does not leave carbon footprints and helps in reducing pollution.
2. The prime advantage of solar cell is that you will not have to refuel them. Once installed, it will generate electricity throughout its lifespan.